"Every attempt has been made to provide an excellent product. Issues were addressed promptly and through the entire process I felt that I had a partner not a contractor"
Rick Kohl, CEO - Preferred Energy
"I got much more than I expected!"
Seth Taylor, Director of Development and Technology, Accolo
“I would not hesitate to work with Softjourn again, they did everything that was asked of them and they were very flexible in working within the framework of the project”,
Frank Calderero - CIO OnDemand, MBT Consultant.
“I would recommend your (Softjourn's) services. You were responsive, great to deal with and delivered a very good product ”,
Ian Cleary, CEO, RazorCoast.
“When you’re creating something totally new it is absolutely necessary to have a partner offer suggestions, be proactive, and think 3 steps ahead instead of merely executing what we said. I can’t thank you enough!”
Entertainment Software Development
The Softjourn team has developed exciting projects for many clients in the Entertainment industry. Here are just a few of them:
- Social Media TV platform used by CBS.com, MTV.com, Epix , etc.
- Box Office Ticketing system - a web-based solution that allows entertainment centers sell their tickets online.
- Online Video platform targeting African viewers all over the world with African tv and movie content.
- Entertainment mobile applications for smartphones.
Financial Software Development
For Softjourn, it all started with financial software development. With deep experience in retail banking applications, our first client was an online money transfer system. Since that time, our team has completed many more projects for clients in different spheres of financial services. We have worked with start-ups assisting them to develop innovative services, for example a service for recurring billing merchants, online payment platform and Check21 systems. One of Softjourn dedicated teams has also worked with Ukraine's largest credit card processing center for a number of years now. We are also up to the challenge of mobile payment software development for companies determined to take advantage of expanding opportunities in commerce via smartphones.
Outsourcing should not be about cutting out pennies, it should be about growing your business.
Did you wake up today thinking about how you can increase your top line through offshoring? Probably not, what you are thinking about is how to reduce expenses.
If lower labor rates are all you want and need to be successful, then pick several offshore vendors and have them compete amongst themselves to give you the lowest rate possible. But as you already know, that isn't all it takes to be successful. If lowering the cost of producing products and services was all it took to successfully grow a firm, then every company would have done it years ago.
Softjourn are experts at assisting our clients in getting additional revenue by offshoring. Whether that is taking on projects that previously would not have been profitable, or quickly pushing out new features of your product and services so you can capture those new clients and gain market share on your competitors. Softjourn realizes that different stages of a company need different solutions; we can assist your company, no matter what stage you are at. For more on Softjourn's customized solutions check out our Solution center.
We make the offshoring process easy by not only providing you with the best resources from Ukraine to become part of your offshore team, but also providing you with the tools and processes to manage and get the highest return on investment with your offshore strategy. To learn more about Softjourn's methodologies go to our Practices center.
Softjourn's outsourcing services includes a specialty end-to-end conversions and support to a SaaS (Software as a Service or web-based application) model for your licensed applications or internal processes; thus enabling our clients to create a recurring revenue stream. For more definition of Softjourn's SaaSuaservices as well application maintenance and development, QA testing, marketing business process outsourcing and other services, go to our Service center.
For additional information about offshoring to Ukraine and Ukrainian outsourcing check Softjourn's Knowledge Center on Ukraine
The Ivano-Frankivsk region and Education
Softjourn’s development center is located in western part of Ukraine – in the city of Ivano-Frankivsk.
The Ivano-Frankivsk region is home to 1.4 million people and the city itself has a population of approximately 250,000. Annually there are approximately 12,500 graduates in higher education from the institutes of higher learning in the Ivano-Frankivsk region. Approximately 29,000 students study at five major Ivano-Frankivsk state institutions with 74 areas of specialization available and another 6380 students studying at one the six commercial institutes in the region.
Annually local universities prepare between 700 and 1000 students in computer science, management information systems, applied mathematics and other related disciplines which include the study of programming languages and other technologies.
Traveling and Working with your Team
- Ukraine provides a nearshore location for Europe (1-2 hour) time difference and two to three hours flight time to most European capitals.
- To the East coast of the US, the time difference is +7 hours, with direct flights offered between New York and Kyiv.
- For members of the European Union, citizens of the USA, Canada, and Japan travel to Ukraine is visa free unlike other Eastern European locations!
Whether you are managing virtual teams of software engineers or Quality Assurance testers and whether they are an outsourced team or working for your firm, managing from a distance can be a daunting task.
If you want to check your skill set against that needed to manage a distributed team, download a recent presentation, "Managing Distributed Software Development may not be for Everyone, but it could be for you!", given by Softjourn at a Project Management Institute Symposium.
Additional resources to help you fulfill your virtual team management role can be found in Softjourn's Knowledge Center.
Ukraine is a prominent country in Eastern Europe with the following advantages related to Offshore Outsourcing:
Ukraine's technical education focus - Traditionally Ukraine always was a technical region of the USSR. IT education was and still is one of the most popular and respected areas in the educational system. Ukraine possesses considerable intellectual potential with its Ukrainian National Academy of Sciences, numerous scientific and technological institutes, universities and R&D companies. It is based on a technical educational structure and research and development structure which have been in place for decades; 65%+ of university degrees are given in mathematics, science, engineering and IT disciplines. Ukraine's overall literacy rate is 99.6%. For access to highly skilled resources, Softjourn maintains close relationships with the universities in the Ivano-Frankivsk region where it works.
Proven Research and Development skills - According to the World Bank, 2,120.6 persons/per million in Ukraine are engaged in R&D, including not only the discovery of new knowledge about products and processes but also the development of new products and services. For example, Scientists from the Ukrainian enterprise, Yuzhnoye, are working with Boeing on the Sea Launch project. Another example can be found at the Paton Institute, responsible for the design of the Soviet version of the cruise missile, which required a very detailed preprogrammed model of the earth's surface. Now this technology is being adapted to the processing of spatial images in order to intelligently extract information from the imagery. R&D Centers can be found within the universities as well. The Complex Systems Modeling department Schevchenko University in Kyiv, has been on the receiving end of grants and projects from the Ukraine Government. In existence for more than thirty years, the department has awarded 100 PhD's, and 22 Doctors of Science. Currently the research of the Complex Systems Modeling department is focused around creating new algorithms for data compression and image recognition. Ukrainians are also responsible for putting the largest plane in the world, the Antonov An-225, in the air.
Ukraine's Proactive Programmers - Programmers in Ukraine are not content to sit and wait for knowledge to come to them; they actively seek it and seek certification to test their knowledge, which can be evidenced by the number of Brainbench certifications received by Ukrainian programmers. In the 2006 report, Ukrainian programmers have received the 4th highest number of certifications of any country in the world, following the US, India and Russia. Ukraine manages to feature in the top five countries in as many as 27 technical skill categories (out of a possible 30) in which Brainbench offers certification. This includes C++, PHP, Software Testing (Quality Assurance Testing), .NET Framework, MS SQL Server 2000 programming, among others. Brainbench also offers testing in business process skills and soft skills, where Ukraine is also figuring prominently including; Project Management, Business Communications, Managing People, Coaching and Time Management. The report can be ordered via Brainbench.
Resources: Outsourced Software Development Ukraine
"Central and Eastern Europe IT Outsourcing Review 2010" , published by the Ukrainian Hi-Tech Initiative, indicates that there is great interest in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) as a prospective region for IT outsourcing services. Currently, the CEE region is ranked between the 3rd and 4th globally, in terms of the number of people involved in IT outsourcing services and the value of executed services. Cultural and geographical compatibility, strong technology science schools and a technology-oriented educational system make the CEE region a very attractive place for foreign companies to set up Research & Development Centers as well as it is favorable for the development of independent IT outsourcing vendors.
"Ukraine and Success Criteria for the Software Exports Industry", by Softjourn CEO, Emmy B. Gengler, published in Vol. 13, The Electronic Journal of Information Systems in Developing Countries. This paper focuses on the broader term of the software exports market (including offshore outsourcing and the development of software product). Ukraine is measured against an accepted model of success factors required for the development of an outsourcing and commercial software product industry. The paper includes recommendations for the further development of the software exports market in Ukraine.
"The Potential of Ukraine in the Global IT Offshore Outsourcing Market", by Sergiy Zatolyuk and Bridget Allgood, Northampton Business School, UK. An evaluation of Ukraine and its potential as an Offshore Outsourcing Market using criteria developed by Gartner Group. To complete the evaluation, 30 Ukrainian outsourcing service providers were surveyed. The paper includes recommendations to the Ukraine government for the further development of the offshoring industry.
"White Paper on Offshore Software Development in Ukraine", produced by the Information Technologies Committee of the American Chamber of Commerce in Ukraine, discusses Ukraine's place in the Offshore Software Development and Offshore Outsourcing market. The report includes case studies; primary research was conducted with outsourcing service providers and university departments conducting research and development.
For additional information, on Ukraine and other offshore software development and business processes locations, refer to papers published in the, "The Electronic Journal of Information Systems in Developing Countries".